Perhaps lost in the flood of news concerning the severe weather pounding the Northeast over the weekend was the fact that Microsoft also began selling its much anticipated Surface Pro tablet.
According to Computerworld, supplies of the device quickly dried up as eager buyers looking for a new enterprise grade tablet snapped them up shortly after they went on sale on Feb. 11. Microsoft’s online store listed both the 64 GB and 128 GB models of the Surface Pro as out of stock.
In addition to its own online and physical stores, Microsoft is also selling the device through partners Best Buy and Staples. The news provider noted that rumors said those stores had stock in the single digits, many of which were claimed before the device even went on sale.
Yankee Group VP of Research Carl Howe comments
“In its launch planning, Microsoft had to choose the lesser of two mobile device manufacturing evils. If it stocked too many in stores, Surface Pro would be perceived as selling poorly. If it stocked too few, Surface would sell out fast, and the press would pillory Microsoft for not making enough. Clearly, it chose the latter course.
Over the longer term, Surface Pro will only succeed if consumers and IT organizations actually buy and use the device in the field. The Surface Pro’s larger size and snap-on keyboard make it easy to spot, so if it’s a big seller, we should start seeing business people carrying them onto airplanes and into conferences within a few months. On the other hand, if presenters still look out into conference audiences and see only seas of Apple-logoed iPads in September, I expect to see Surface Pro fire sales to get unsold stock off Microsoft’s books. This is Microsoft’s sixth attempt to drive tablet PC products into the market; if this one fails, the market is sending Microsoft a clear message that it isn’t making tablet products that the market wants.”
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